- The international court has urged the Ugandan authorities to arrest the indicted Sudanese President, Omar Al-Bashir if he comes to Kampala next week for the African Union meeting.
The International Criminal Court statement comes a day after President Yoweri Museveni said Uganda will not execute the international arrest warrant on President Al Bashir at the summit.
Uganda as a signatory to the Rome Statute, has a legal obligation to arrest the Sudanese president who is wanted by the International Court for allegedly masterminding widespread killings in Sudanese war torn Darfur region.
Uganda’s ICC country coordinator, Maria Kamara told local reports that the Court’s stand on the indictment of the Sudanese President has not changed.
However, she said that since not all African Union (AU) countries are signatories to the ICC statute, the responsibility of arresting president Al Bashir lies solely with ICC member countries.
Uganda has invited President Al Bashir to the AU summit in Kampala.
“No matter who will be indicted, all member countries to the Rome statute have the mandate to arrest that person and so the ball is in Uganda’s hands,” she told local reports.
The AU summit in Libya last July adopted a resolution to halt any cooperation of African states that are ICC states in arresting Bashir which would include Uganda.
The warrant for the arrest of President Al Bashir was based on allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity. He is suspected of being criminally responsible for attacks against civilians in Darfur.
An estimated 2.6 million Darfurians remain displaced from their homes and as many as 4.7 million people in total depend on humanitarian assistance, while sexual violence and banditry are also prevalent.
The UN said close to 300,000 people have been killed since fighting erupted in 2003, pitting rebels against government forces and allied Janjaweed militiamen.
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